THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE
Youth hunters (age 17 and under) can sign up now for ODFW’s free pheasant hunts happening around the state in September.
The events are being held in Baker City, Central Point, Corvallis, Eugene, Irrigon/Umatilla, John Day, Klamath Falls, La Grande, Madras, Portland, The Dalles (Tygh Valley). See dates below and register online (see Register for a Class/Youth Upland Hunts), at a license sales agent or at an ODFW office that sells licenses. Note that the Ladd Marsh and Fern Ridge hunts do not require advance registration.
ODFW and partners stock pheasants at these special hunts that give youth a head start on regular pheasant seasons, which don’t begin until October. Quail and dove can also be hunted. Volunteers often bring their trained hunting dogs to hunt with participants. Some events also begin with a shotgun skills clinic, so participants can practice clay target shooting before hunting.
These events are only open to youth who have passed hunter education. (ODFW has many hunter education classes and field days available before the events.) An adult 21 years of age or older must accompany the youth to supervise but may not hunt.
“If your child made it through hunter education but is still new to the sport, this is a great way to get them started,” says James Reed, ODFW hunter education coordinator. “These events happen before regular pheasant seasons open and are a great opportunity for kids to get out hunting.”
ODFW stresses safety during the hunts. Both hunter and supervisor must wear a hunter orange hat, eye protection and a hunter orange vest—equipment provided by ODFW at the clinics to anyone who doesn’t have it. Hunters also need to check in and out of the hunt.
The hunts are free, though participants need a valid hunting license ($10 for youth 12 and older, free for age 11 and under) to hunt. Youth hunters age 12-17 also need an upland game bird validation ($4). Purchase online, at a license sales agent or ODFW office that sells licenses. Licenses and validations will not be sold at the events.
While most areas have a hunt both Saturday and Sunday, youth hunters may only sign up for one hunt. They are welcome to hunt stand by on the other day.
See the links below (from www.odfwcalendar.com) for more details including who to contact for more information.
- Baker City area, Sept. 23 and Sept. 24. Note this event is not near the Baldock Slough Wetlands Project (regulations are in error). People who register for the event will be notified of its location via email.
- Central Point, Denman Wildlife Area, Sept. 16 and Sept. 17.
- Corvallis (near Camp Adair), EE Wilson Wildlife Area, Sept. 23 and Sept. 24.
- Eugene, Fern Ridge Wildlife Area, Sept. 9 and Sept. 10. Registration not necessary but appreciated.
- Irrigon Wildlife Area (between Irrigon and Umatilla), Sept. 23 and Sept. 24, sign up for morning or evening hunt (morning only on Sunday), see event listings at www.odfwcalendar.com
- Klamath Falls, Klamath Wildlife Area, Sept. 16 and Sept. 17. Additional hunt on Oct. 21 when Miller Island Unit open to youth hunters only from 10 a.m. on a first-come, first-serve basis.
- John Day Valley, Sept. 16 and Sept. 17
- La Grande, Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area, Sept. 16 and Sept. 17. No advance registration required.
- Madras, Gateway Canyon Preserve, Sept. 9 and Sept. 10, sign up for one of several three-hour hunting shifts.
- Portland, Sauvie Island Wildlife Area, Sept. 16 and Sept. 17.
- Tygh Valley/The Dalles, White River Wildlife Area, Sept. 16 and Sept. 17.